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Why Don’t Dads Change Diapers?

I promised myself a long while ago that this blog would be a “happy place”, someplace to chronicle the adventures the kids and I have as we grow up together. I did not want it to be a place where I gripe and complain about problems I encounter being a stay-at-home dad. But – you knew there was a “but” coming – I just can’t let this one slide.

As you know if you’ve been reading the blog at all recently we just got back from a week long trip to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. It’s about a 11 hour drive from our house to where we stayed. Driving 1400 miles round trip with three toddlers still in diapers is no easy feat. There are lots of stops for diaper changes, especially for Juli, who regularly downs as much water as she can to test the absorbency tolerance of whatever brand of diapers we are currently buying. Side note, Costco’s Kirkland Signature brand Diapers can hold a LOT of liquid.

So, back to the topic at hand. We stopped at a number of rest stops, McDonald’s, and wherever else we thought might be a good place to change the kids when they needed it. Almost every time we stopped I would take one of the kids into the restroom only to find that there was no changing station and I would have to do a standing diaper change. Not the easiest thing in the world to do, especially when you have little girls who like to dance.  When there was a changing station in the mens room, often it was located in the handicap stall. Which, as we all know, is the most popular stall in the bathroom. Elisha and I waited about ten minutes for one gentleman to finish up before giving up and doing the standing change right there in the middle of the bathroom with about four other guys waiting for their turn at the urinal.

If you’re business sells happy meals or kids meals and has a huge slide out front for kids to play in, you need to have a changing station in both restrooms or provide a family room.

So yeah, if there’s no changing station, of course the guy is going to take the kid back out to mom and say “here, you change him/her” because there’s probably a convenient place for changing in the women’s restroom.

If I’m going to complain about the bad, I should point out the good. North Carolina, you have the nicest, cleanest rest stops I’ve ever seen. And there is a changing station in the mens room. West Virginia, not so clean, but you do provide the changing station for dads, good job there. I would comment on Ohio’s rest stops if any of them along our route were open, but they weren’t so we had to wait it out. Hopefully there are changing stations included in their remodel plans.

ForgottenJune 24, 2010 - 12:39 pm

AMEN. I commend you on this one. I have often wondered aloud while in places like this why there are no changing tables in the men’s rooms, too. I understand why they put them in the handicap stall though, would you want a random guy looking at your baby’s girly parts? It’s an uncomfortable thought but there are good reasons for that one. This is one of the reasons I love Target. They have a family restroom. Nice job with this post.

Running5k2dayJuly 7, 2010 - 3:02 pm

My husband would always hand me the twins with this excuse. I wasn’t going to walk in the restroom to confirm this–but I am glad you did point this out to the women.
Now that my girls are potty trained, I still have the duty of rushing them into the restroom because men’s restrooms have urinals and who wants their little girls seeing anyone’s penis? Ewww!!!!
More places need family restrooms. These are rare but they are so nice.